Grayson #6. Writer- Tom King, Plot by Tim Seeley & Tom King, Artist- Mikel Janin, Colorist- Jeromy Cox.
The mystery deepens. Grayson vs. Midnighter- Round 2! A whale with legs. Minos shows character depth. Dick Grayson as Spider-Man! Who is Midnighter’s “mother?” Who is the Gardener and what is the Garden?
The one thing that is clearly in the plan for the first arc of Grayson is making the book as much about Dick Grayson the man as it is spies and international intrigue. The creative team has also done a good job in crafting stories that fit into a single issue but manage to be part of a larger arc. You might also want to go get your New 52 run of Blackhawks out. It may prove useful.
Dick and Helena are on Gageo-Do island in the Yellow Sea, when they are surprised by a Land-Orca! This quickly makes the reader forget that their actual mission is to find a loose collection of deserters from disparate criminal organizations who have formed this group for personal gain- the AWOL. And they’ve come into possession of Paragon’s brain. Unfortunately, when Dick and Helena finally discover where they’ve been hiding, they’re all dead, courtesy of The Fist of Cain. Oops.
This quickly leads to the discovery of a survivor of the attack. While Helena uses her hypnos on him, Dick and Midnighter go at it again. While not nearly as one sided as their first encounter, Dick still shows Midnighter who’s boss, despite Midnighter having done his homework and studying and memorizing all of Nightwing’s moves.
Back at Sypral, Minos is having an “interaction” with Spyder. This gives us an intriguing tease at who or what is directing Minos. We find out that Minos has something in his past he’s holding onto and it is all that’s left of the man he was.
After dispatching Midnighter, Dick is met by The Gardener, Midnighter’s “Mother” and he comes to realize he’s on The Garden, as it heads into space….
The overall structure of this arc is a nice change of pace from so many comics today, for that alone it is unique. Additionally, the building and reinforcing of character over the arc is one of the best things about this title. The Fist of Cain reaches back to Nightwing #30 and the whole arc begins to come full circle.
The density of this issue may not be your thing. It’s also not exactly a fast paced issue. It’s a more cerebral issue as well. The creative team is asking the reader to slow down and take some time before shooting off into another unexpected direction. This issue ends with a cliffhanger, something we haven’t really gotten in an issue of Grayson before. Delivering all the references and character moments left the overall feeling slightly flat, but just slightly.
There’s a lot going on in this issue. From the nanocytes introduced in Blackhawks #1 3 ½ years ago, to the word play with Dick being a “Spider-Man,” if you pay attention closely, you’ll be rewarded. Grayson continues to be an enjoyable book. However, this issue will read better as part of the overall story arc.